Imagine a cinema full as it once was, with the ghosts of Covid and the pandemic momentarily closed behind the heavy drapes that isolate the hall from the foyer, while the audience in the hall claps their hands in unison at the time of the iconic Ghostbusters soundtrack: this was the party of the preview screening of Ghostbusters: Legacy at Lucca Comics 2021.
The event, beautifully managed and orchestrated by Sony and the festival organization, was the most exciting one could imagine: the Ecto-1 in front of the entrance to the Astra cinema in Lucca, a group of cosplayers warm up the room (including a kind of Egon look-alike damn resembling the late Harold Ramis).
In short, everything is really perfect and engaging, as only the Ghostbusters saga manages to be, with those characteristics that have now fully entered the pop-nerd collective imagination and that only a Reitman could have “brought back to life”.
– NerdSalvation (@NerdSalvation) November 2, 2021
The true spirit of the Ghostbusters returns with Ghostbusters: Legacy
Jason Reitman, Ivan’s heir, the director of the first two Ghostbusters, managed to give credit to the two films directed by his father with a sequel as faithful to the saga as it is current and projected towards the future.
Respectful of the requests of Jason himself and Sony – a company that we thank for bringing the preview of Ghostbusters: Legacy in Lucca to Italy on Halloween – you will not read anything about the plot of the film in this review so as not to run into spoilers and because you can enjoy the film in a satisfying and engaging way as happened to myself.
Let’s start from Sony and from the note made in the room about the title of the film, which we remember has been changed from the original Ghostbusters: Afterlife. Well, it doesn’t always happen, but this time the Italian title is really much more significant than the US one, with that “Legacy” that underlines the “blood” link with the saga of the 80s.
The Ghostbusters Legacy
It is really a legacy that the director Jason Reitman puts before us, a passing of the baton (all in the family) between two generations of ghostbusters with the genius that is known, often a generation really skips it.
Apart from the choreography in the room, the atmosphere of Lucca that makes us feel more nerdy than ever and that damned desire to have to deal with ectoplasms, proton backpacks and pedal traps again, the film by Reitman jr. it really hits the mark and gives us the Ghostbusters sequel that we all deserve, so much so that “that thing there a few years ago we don’t even remember anymore.
Let’s be clear, to be honest we must admit that Jason played wisely with our feelings, giving us the right fan service sometimes exceeding a little, but it is something that we forgive him quietly and, indeed, in certain moments we really thanked him for how the director played with our memories and with the things we love most about Ghostbusters.
An example of this is the series of applause of convinced approval with which the audience exploded during the screening. In some cases I think the tears of emotion have touched (you will find out for yourself what I mean when you see the film) so much so that I myself wonder how much the film is worth in itself and how much, instead, it owes to that passion that for almost forty ‘ years accompanies all of us fans whenever we talk about Ghostbusters.
A film that tastes of family
But Jason Reitman, in addition to knowing what he was doing and what the fans would like, managed to craft a convincing film from all points of view. The script, for example, could have been the most mangy thing to deal with but the story involving fathers, children and grandchildren is simple and without excessive forcing, a succession of “accommodating” events that makes us feel at home.
Perhaps someone will turn up their noses because Reitman Jr. did not risk much, with a situation similar to the one that George Lucas presented to us with Star Wars: The Force Awakens Episode VII by many considered almost a remake of The Phantom Menace, the fact is that Ghostbusters: Legacy is really the film that was needed to give credit and honor to the franchise.
Reitman’s shrewd and attentive direction is enhanced by the convincing interpretations of the whole cast, with the very young Mckenna Grace in the role of Phoebe on the shields, assisted by the hilarious Logan Kim as a “Podcast” to act as an ironic shoulder to the little genius-nerd grandson of Egon Spengler: a full-blown comic duo.
The Stranger Things star is a little overshadowed Finn Wolfhard who in the role of Trevor “returns” to wear the Ghostbusters suit this time for real.
What about the Paul Rudd, seismologist and science worshiper ended up as a substitute teacher in the province who, in some passages, reminds us a bit of Rick Moranis and his adorable Louis from the first two films (I told you no that Ghostbusters: Legacy is almost co and Episode VII right?).
In short, the “Ghostbusters experience” in Lucca was truly satisfying and wonderful, thanks to the atmosphere, but undoubtedly much of the success must be given to the film that truly represents the perfect sequel to the first two films of the Ghostbusters, a film that is itself a tribute to the films of the 80s and to pop-nerd culture in general, elements that contributed to creating that familiar and reassuring atmosphere that was breathed in the room during the screening.
After all, we enthusiasts, no matter what they say, are easy to please: it takes very little (but done well) to hit us in the heart, bring back memories and emotions and transport us once again into the magical world of the things we love most. Thanks Jason for giving us back the Ghostbusters!
Oh, I forgot, when you go to see the film stay with the backs well glued to your seats so as not to miss the post-credit scene of Ghostbusters: Legacy … the future of Ghostbusters may be only at the beginning.
Jason Reitman packs a very beautiful and well-made film, the perfect sequel to a saga that has marked the history of cinema and pop-nerd culture.